Just Say “Friend”

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Slam poem. To say "I'm offended" at being called "the Persian Friend" is a stretch, but I have been doing a lot of thinking and listening to people lately. It has gotten me to wondering why do we do this? Why does Bouyong Shin have to be "My Korean friend," or "Luiz Fernando "My Mexican friend," or Akamu Akeala "my Hawaiian friend"? Why do we segregate our friends into these little boxes like a library where we can go in a check out a particular friend at any time we wish? We don't really think about it, and I doubt many are aware enough to be offended, butI feel like it's a legitimate question to be had. And so, this poem was born...

Poetry / Other
Loki B. Mohammad
Age Rating:

Just Say "Friend"

Amigo, Sadiq, Péngyū, Friend
Doostam, Vinur, Yūjin, you see the trend?
No matter which way the letters bend
All have the same message to lend
But every now and again
The term “friend” can offend
So I ask you, what then do you send
When the word “friend” hurts rather than mends?
You look at me and say “my Persian friend”
Single me out, and you pretend that
It’s not a matter of grouping, but please comprehend
A group of friends must interdepend
Upon the unity and ability to blend
In with individuals with no need to append
“Friend” with a cultural addendum that rends
Each of us isolated on the end of an augend
We are more than the color of our skin; the amount
Of melanin within does not justify that which is sent
By voice or by pen, the racial description of “friend”
So now I send a chance to amend; you can attack
Or choose to defend, but this I forever contend that you
Ignore that from which I descend and just know me simply as “Friend.”

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